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Author Topic: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)  (Read 7166 times)

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Offline philcom55

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #60 on: July 01, 2011, 02:44:48 AM »
I think you mean Sandman Mystery Theatre, Yoc. That was one of my all-time favorite comics - and Guy Davis is still one of my favorite artists.

Hopefully the new relaunch won't have any significant effect on DC's Vertigo titles.

 - Phil Rushton

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #60 on: July 01, 2011, 02:44:48 AM »

Offline John C

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #61 on: July 01, 2011, 05:12:41 AM »
I never got around to Sandman Mystery Theater, but I heard good things.  There were actually quite a few gems in DC's '90s in among all the weapon-wielding scar-faced Image knockoffs.  Chase comes immediately to mind, and would fit neatly in a single TPB if they ever decided to collect it...

Animal Man?  I don't know.  It was OK at the time (not "great"), but today it seems like it'd be pretty cliched, being more "an exploration of the medium" (yawn) than a bunch of good stories.  Morrison's Doom Patrol (and Rachel Pollack's after), though, running at around the same time was a lot of fun on a few levels.

Back to the more recent stuff, Manhunter was above-average, I think, but the premise felt a little too petty for me to take seriously (prosecutor chases down the criminals she can't get convicted) and they started dipping too deep iinto the continuity well, rewriting all the other Manhunter characters (basically discarding their histories) to be something different to support what was basically a mediocre story.

Another "series" (sort of "as the creator has time to do stuff") I just discovered through Kickstarter--in fact, the books showed up on my doorstep just the other day and I tore right through the first book--is Malaak:

http://www.malaakonline.com/

A Lebanese heroine that's fun without being goofy (I'm looking at you French and English guys), serious without being "gritty," and so far, doesn't feel like it's trying to be obsessively Arabic or feminist.  It's very well done.  About the only complaint I might have is that the art is a little on the primitive side, not pretty except in a storybook illustration kind of way, but still entirely functional.

Online Yoc

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #62 on: July 01, 2011, 12:22:35 PM »
Haven't heard of 'Chase' before.  OtherEric pointed me at 'Chew' which I put a hold on at the library.
Looking at 'Malaak' site.  This has sort of a 'Tin Tin' feel to the art.  Not a knock-off for sure but it gives me the same feeling when I look at it.

I like things that break the fourth wall so Animal Man might  be up my alley.

Seems we've gone off topic doesn't it?  This almost deserves it's own 'What would you recommend among modern books these days?' topic no?

Offline John C

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #63 on: July 01, 2011, 04:03:17 PM »
Chase (ignoring a lot including revelations) was basically about how a normal person deals with the weirdness of the DCU.  She's an agent tasked with monitoring superheroes and supervillains, basically, and deals with threats to national security.  What impressed me was that the tone wasn't unilateral.  As befitted something supposed to be "real," some incidents were grim and nasty, others were outright funny.  It's a shame more writers didn't learn that lesson.

(Heh.  I'll pass on commenting on a new thread.  Personally, I hate dedicated threads for that sort of thing, since it's just something that's going to come up from time to time.  Then you'll have people bickering about what's "recent" and so forth...)

Online Yoc

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #64 on: July 01, 2011, 05:00:13 PM »
I'm guessing 'Chase' ends with her going insane trying to figure out the Hawkman and Wonder Girl histories?
;)

Online Yoc

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #65 on: July 01, 2011, 10:26:51 PM »
Getting back to the original topic - it seems some DC readers aren't taking the relaunch news very well...

"DC Relaunch: Angry Fans To Protest At SDCC






Posted by MK2Fac3  |  July 1st, 2011


A group of rather angry comic book readers are starting a campaign against DC Comics with a protest walk scheduled from 2pm to 3pm on Saturday, July 23, 2011 at the upcoming San Diego Comic Con. Fed up with the news and redesigns affiliated with the publisherís September relaunch, these protesters have gathered enough support to reach 299 attendees, according to the groupís Facebook page.
Also on their Facebook page is a message and description of the event from the groupís founder, which you can read here below.


Are you utterly baffled, disappointed and just ANGRY to see how DC ruins your favorite characterís design and wipes decades of comic history out of the mainstream universe? Well, youíre not alone!
And why not make some noise at the biggest pop-culture event this year, where creators, artists and writers appear in person Ė show them how fans Ė the fans of the classic characters, the (nevertheless slightly changing) designs, the characterís history and personality Ė really feel about it!
Now, are these people insane like most other websites are claiming? Most likely. There are definitely at least a trillion other things these 200+ people could be doing with their time, and protesting a comic book publisherís editorial mandate sounds a little ridiculous. But how else are these people going to voice their opinions? Certainly not by leaving comments on DCís official website. This group of people has a right to send a message to DC about how they feel, regardless of how silly it comes off, or if the publisher will just turn a blind eye to the group. Because honestlyÖ thereís no way this is going to be effective.
Donít get me wrong, as hesitant as I am to freely accept a lot of the relaunch and character redesigns, Iím genuinely excited by a lot of new titles and creative teams. Thereís a lot to appreciate about the DC Relaunch, so I donít agree with this group at all. What could be effective, however, is for this group to put their money where there mouth is. You know, not buy the comics and creative teams that they donít like, and also buy books that they actually like. If Bryan Q. Millerís Batgirl was selling the numbers that Tony Danielís Batman was selling, do you think DC would have axed the creative team and character on that title? Of course not. If Secret Six was actually purchased by all the people on the Internet that sing its praises, do you think the publisher would have canceled the book? Do you see a connection?"

Found on a Yahoo list.
-Yoc

Offline John C

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #66 on: July 02, 2011, 06:58:52 AM »
Wow.  Nobody wants to protest the FBI's expanded surveillance rules or the United States running a third war in the Middle East when the others are going oh, so well (politics for demonstrative purposes only), but dammit, we will NOT stand for Black Canary wearing shoulder pads!

It's a shame that not one of these people is ever going to realize that this sort of reactionary attitude is exactly why comics cost up to a nickel per panel for stuff people only read because they feel obligated:  Outsiders see comic readers as some sort of creepy cult packed with people who can't deal with the real world, so they're not touching them with a ten foot pole.

Offline Roygbiv666

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #67 on: July 02, 2011, 08:44:54 AM »
Wow.  Nobody wants to protest the FBI's expanded surveillance rules or the United States running a third war in the Middle East when the others are going oh, so well (politics for demonstrative purposes only), but dammit, we will NOT stand for Black Canary wearing shoulder pads!

It's a shame that not one of these people is ever going to realize that this sort of reactionary attitude is exactly why comics cost up to a nickel per panel for stuff people only read because they feel obligated:  Outsiders see comic readers as some sort of creepy cult packed with people who can't deal with the real world, so they're not touching them with a ten foot pole.

People like this, from a Simpsons episode at a comic convention:

Doug: [wearing a T-shirt that says "Genius at Work"] Hi. A question for Miss Bellamy. In episode 2F09 when Itchy plays Scratchy's skeleton like a xylophone, he strikes the same rib twice in succession, yet he produces two clearly different tones. I mean, what are we to believe, that this is some sort of a magic xylophone or something? Boy, I really hope somebody got fired for that blunder.
June Bellamy: Uh, well...
Homer: I'll field this one.
Homer: [to Doug] Let me ask you a question. Why would a man whose shirt says "Genius at Work" spend all of his time watching a children's cartoon show?
[pause]
Doug: I withdraw my question.
[takes a bite from a bar of chocolate]

Offline paw broon

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #68 on: July 02, 2011, 10:34:13 AM »
Phil, difficult to have an argument with you - I seem to agree with a lot of what you write. Yet again, Sandman Mystery Theatre was excellent and is still a good read 3rd. time round. Which is what I'm at now.
Davis also did that Venetian plague mask series, forget the title, but I don't know if it ever finished.

John C, while I note that you use the political argument as an illustration, I'm not sure I wish to get into a  political discussion. And I'm sure you're writing about the demonstrators.
My views on what the U.K. and USA are doing in foreign countries, and what seems to be going on inside USA, are quite strong.  But they have no relation or connection to why I buy and read.  Apart from giving up Ultimates in disgust at what my countryman, Mark Miller, was putting into the mouths of the characters.
I pick up comics if I like the look of them, or if someone has suggested I try a title.  I read them and if they really appeal, I might read them again then put them aside and either pass them on or, if I wish to keep a particular favourite, shove it in a bag.  As I pay good money for the entertainment, I feel I should voice my opposition to things which don't appeal to me.  And take my business elsewhere if I don't fancy the product being churned out. Wont affect DC or the other companies in the slightest what I do and I'm an old fan who knows enough now to find my comics entertainment in other ways.  I don't feel in any way obligated to buy anything, neither do I have any sympathy with those numpties who are demonstrating. There are much more important things to get ones knickers in a twist about but I suppose they have a right to do it.
I read Winter Soldier this week.  It was loaned to me by an older lady in my Italian class who had read it and thought I might enjoy it, so despite the lack of appreciation here in Britain for comics, there are still some folk who do enjoy them and appreciate them as part of a varied reading experience.  Me, I'm going to sit down with my wife shortly for a dinner of home made spaghetti vongole, crusty bread and a few glasses of rather good Italian white wine. Now that's important.
Oh, and I might read a few comics.
Stephen Montgomery

Offline John C

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #69 on: July 02, 2011, 11:33:34 AM »
As I pay good money for the entertainment, I feel I should voice my opposition to things which don't appeal to me.  And take my business elsewhere if I don't fancy the product being churned out.

Just to clarify, people should talk about what they like and don't like about what they read, of course.  It might improve things (I know a couple of professionals are lurking in the corners here, from obscure comments I've read elsewhere) or might inspire someone to create the next big thing that we'll actually want to read--that's why I'm candid about what I think does and doesn't work in what I've read.

I just find this an very odd place to draw the line in the sand to march on injustice.  Not only is it what a company is doing with its own property and not only is it fictional property, but it's a reaction to something that hasn't happened yet, based almost entirely on titles and covers.  (Keep in mind that I might be a little sensitive to this sort of thing, since I've just sat through a week of unremitting celebration in New York, because gay people have earned the historic right that, if they love someone enough, they can file paperwork with the government!  Woo, totally more satisfying than making sure Nicaraguan kids don't die of starvation, right?)

But--and you point this out, too--there are fewer of us every year.  If we're going to be loud and obnoxious, too, we're not worth the marketing money to chase as customers.

There's (un)fortunately no way of measuring this, but if there were, I'd also be willing to bet that the overwhelming majority of the protestors will end up reading and enjoying most of the books anyway.  It seems to happen with every overhaul, and I doubt this one'll be an exception.

Offline Roygbiv666

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #70 on: July 02, 2011, 12:20:18 PM »
... I've just sat through a week of unremitting celebration in New York, because gay people have earned the historic right that, if they love someone enough, they can file paperwork with the government!  Woo, totally more satisfying than making sure Nicaraguan kids don't die of starvation, right?)

What could be better than filing paperwork with the government? There was a comedian who had a joke something to the effect of (in reference to gay people): "First they want to join the army, then they want to get married? Why do they want in all of our worst institutions?" only, y'know, funny.

I work in engineering and part of the process is getting a design done, then getting it approved by a government agency. Product design sheet = 3 pages, application to government to approve said product = 30 pages (I kid you not)! Our tax dollars at work.

Online Yoc

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #71 on: July 02, 2011, 01:58:26 PM »
What I am most curious to see is the effect of same day scans on the local comic shop bottom lines.
Is this going to be the nail in the coffin for a large number of LCS?
It's been speculated this is an all out attempt by DC to attract the 'hip digital age crowd' who wouldn't be caught dead in a LCS but might buy a comic if it's easy to find online.
Even those that Do still go to LCS, can they afford to buy all 52 new titles?  Not likely.  So do shop owners over stock these new #1's or play it safe and under order them?

If I were a LCS right now I'd be pretty nervous about all of this AND I'd be especially attentive to me regular crowd.  What can I do to make my shop more attractive than any online experience?  Is it even possible to compete?

Offline narfstar

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #72 on: July 02, 2011, 02:45:33 PM »
My LCS said experience shows that the digital generally increases TPB sales. They expect the difference in flopppy sales will more than be made up for by TPB sales.

Offline John C

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #73 on: July 02, 2011, 04:25:05 PM »
If I were a LCS right now I'd be pretty nervous about all of this AND I'd be especially attentive to me regular crowd. 

To be fair, I doubt it'll actually impact the stores much unless they don't treat their regulars well.  I mean, let's face facts, comic readers are creatures of habit.  How many of us (a fairly well-educated and self-restrained crowd, from what I can tell) made the ritual weekly trek to the shop to buy an armload of comics that we probably really weren't going to read, because the titles had dropped in quality years back?

I'm embarrassed to say so, but I probably bought new comics three or four years after I stopped enjoying them, and another couple after I stopped reading.

What can I do to make my shop more attractive than any online experience?  Is it even possible to compete?

I think it's entirely possible, but it needs to center around not giving "cool kids," mothers, and girlfriends a reason to think they'll be kidnapped and sold into slavery if they go in.  That means natural light and a clear enough space that you can see the back of the shop from the street.  It also means dialing the misogyny down to around a three and throwing out the T&A posters.

(Related:  Go to your local drug store and walk through the cosmetics aisle.  Notice that nothing worth buying is on a shelf below the waist or above the head.  Follow that logic, because men don't really like having their rear ends exposed to foot traffic, either.)

After you stop scaring people away, you can sell, and I think this is where the digital comics do much more good than harm:  Put a big TV in the front window with a computer showing (good, fun) pages from the week's comics, then flip the store around so that the high-ticket items are in back and the comics are up front.

(Hint:  Sears puts the men's section in a back corner so that wives will be tempted to buy themselves something on the way in and on the way out.  Someone off the street isn't going to be tricked into buying action figures and video games when he came in because the Captain America movie piqued his interest.  However, the other way around has a pretty good chance of working.)

The racks themselves should be, y'know, helpful, rather than assuming everybody has memorized the Diamond solicitations for the month.  By which I mean print out the damned solicitation and post it next to the comic so that Timmy knows that this is part seventy-nine of eighty-three and Carol Burnett makes a cameo appearance.  It might also be a good idea to have another screen with more in-depth previews of the books and where to find related material (back issues, paperbacks, movies, whatever, and whether they're in inventory).

Along similar lines, ditch the cash register for a computer system that tracks sales so your salesdweeb can play Amazon:  "Hey, cool book.  Did you know that a bunch of our customers who read this also grab Honey Han the Hen Hunter?  I'll give you a discount if you want to try it out."

I'm not making this all up, by the way.  Some of it's common sense.  Some of it comes from Paco Underhill's books (if you ever sell or design anything for selling, read them), but I actually used to go to a highly successful comic shop in a mall.  Not an open-air strip mall, but an actual, indoor, big-haired kids loitering at the entrance mall.  The design wasn't too far from what I'm describing, less the video support.  Great layout with everything accessible and a great staff.

It was sad to watch the place die off.  Someone bought them out along with a few video game stores and tried to merge the gaming into the comic store.  They (of course) pushed the comics to the back, and turned down the lights, but with a dedicated video game place two doors down, that was just stupid, so, of course, they phased out the comics, then closed a couple months later.  Brilliant!

(The pretty young woman managing the place was probably a factor, too, of course.  She knew the solicitations every which way, I think, and was really good at "name that comic" when a confused customer came in, usually having it ordered for said customer within a week.  But someone like her isn't exactly an option for most stores, I realize.  And before anybody asks, she's since gotten married to a nice archaeologist who was very disappointed that he wasn't allowed to fight Nazis.)

Offline Roygbiv666

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Re: There's No Stopping Them Now...Again (DC's renumbering)
« Reply #74 on: July 02, 2011, 04:50:57 PM »
... print out the damned solicitation and post it next to the comic so that Timmy knows that this is part seventy-nine of eighty-three and Carol Burnett makes a cameo appearance. 


I would totally buy that book. My LCS (which I haven't been in for ... about a year) is well lit, the staff is friendly, but the comics are near the back. Most people likely get into running a comic shop based on liking comics, as opposed to having business knowledge, sadly.

But, isn't the main problem only having comics in specialty shops? What is the modern equivalent of the local mom 'n pop convenience store. At least with digital, they can put free previews on websites that kids visit, that might get them started.